Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall speaks about her anorexia battle which doctors warned could have killed her
The singer from South Shields has opened up about living with anorexia for five years of her life with the hopes of inspiring others who are affected.
She spoke about the issue on a special episode of BBC Sound's Life Hacks podcast called, ‘Life Hacks - I've Been There: Jade Thirlwall & Anorexia' where she refers to suffering from anorexia for five years before winning X Factor with her band in 2011.
Before reaching fame on the talent show she was raised in Laygate and attended performing arts college in South Tyneside. She revealed that she had suffered with anorexia in the group's book, Our World, after experiencing bullying at school, and the death of her grandfather.
Jade claims she found it difficult to tell people what she was going through but that when she did, it helped. She said: "It was like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders.
"The minute I started to actually talk to people about it, was the minute I started to get better."
She was later told by doctors that she was so ill that she could die if she continued losing weight.
Jade was allowed to leave hospital when she was 18, which was a matter of weeks before she auditioned for X Factor.
She told Katie Thistleton, the presenter of the podcast, that she has now recovered completely from the eating disorder.
On social media, Jade said: “I really hope by sharing my story I was able to help both them and anyone listening to the podcast to further understand anorexia and see that recovery is absolutely possible."
Living in the public eye means that Jade is subject to a lot of negative comments, however she says with the help she received, she knows how to deal with it.
She said: "Being famous still has a lot of downsides, like people constantly talk about the way I look if I put a little bit of weight on, and there are unflattering photos.
You can listen to the podcast on BBC Sounds online.